Why Is Lighting So Important In Retail Environments?

Lighting is one of the most influential factors in determining the success or failure of retail spaces. Retailers must use a variety of different lighting systems strategically to ensure that they are able to entice shoppers into their stores, create environments that are equipped to facilitate sales, and communicate their brand’s identity to customers.

Types of Lighting in Retail

1. Ambient 

Ambient lighting is typically the store’s primary lighting. When your customers walk into the store, you need to make sure the atmosphere is welcoming. This doesn’t mean you need to dim the lights or make the store too bright. The size of the space, the height of the ceilings, and the amount of natural light will all dictate how dim or how bright your store should be.

2. Accent lighting

Accent lighting is used to highlight a specific area to draw customers towards a particular product that you want to prioritize. Put the focus on your latest products or ones that are on sale by, quite literally, shining a light on them. Store owners typically use accent lighting in their window displays as a way to get the attention of potential customers passing by.

3. Task Lighting

Task lighting is used to provide light for a specific task or purpose. This includes lighting up the register, where transactions will happen; the fitting rooms, where people will be trying on and evaluating clothes; and your office space, where you fill out paperwork and work each day. Task lighting is used as a supplemental light source anywhere tasks are being done.

4. High-activity lighting

Traditional lighting concepts often leave stores with dark corners and shadowy spots. But high-activity lighting focuses on covering the entire space with bright lights to eliminate the possibility that customers will miss any of your products.

Retail Light Coverage

To ensure that your space will look great , you will want to go back to your total lumens.

The Lighting Research Center recommends that retail stores aim for an ambient light measurement of 1.5 to 2.5 lumens per cubic foot. To calculate this, you first need to calculate the cubic area of your retail space, using this formula: Width x Length x Height of your sales floor = Total Cubic Area.

Then, multiply that total by 1.5-2.5 to get an estimate of appropriate lumens for the space.

After you figure up the total lumens needed to light the space, add up the total lumens provided by the bulbs in your lighting plan. Does the total number of lumens in your plan come close to the lumens needed per your cubic foot formula? If it’s close, then you’re on track. If your plan’s total lumens is greater, you can pare back lighting in some areas. If it’s lower than the recommended amount, you may need to fill in some gaps with more ambient lighting.

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